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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70811
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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I have a dispute with &q about flooring I bought from them

Customer Question

Hi,
JA: Hi. How can I help?
Customer: I have a dispute with b&q about flooring I bought from them that has bowed and chipped and is not fit for purpose. They say it has been layed incorrectly but I have absolute proof beyond doubt that it has been put down correctly. They will not accept liability. I would like to know if it is feasible for me to take them to court over this and if so what is the likelihood of winning my case. I have contacted the relevant ombudsman over this but they won’t do anything for twelve weeks.
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: westbury wilts
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: They sent an independent surveyor to check the installation but he has given his opinion based on assumption, not fact. The floor is a floating floor and requires at least a 10mm gap all round. I have left at least 15mm all round. He could not verify this at the time because the skirting covered the gap. I offered to remove the skirting whilst he was there but he declined my offer and said it was not necessar. He then said in his report that the gap was not big enough and that it was my fault that the flooring buckled. THIS IS TOTALLY INCORRECT and B&Q are not playing fair. I have tried contacting B&Q but they have closed the case and are not responding to my emails.
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: Nothing more that I can think of at the moment thank-you
Submitted: 8 days ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 8 days ago.

Hello, I’m Ben. It’s my pleasure to assist you today. I may also ask for some preliminary information to help me determine the legal position.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 8 days ago.

Hi there. When did you buy the flooring and what are you ideally hoping for , given the circumstances so that I can best advise?

Customer: replied 8 days ago.
I purchased the flooring September 2019. It came with a ten year guarantee but deteriorated very quickly. I have asked B&Q for a refund but they have refused
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 8 days ago.

OK I understand and thank you for providing this information. Please do not worry and leave it with me for now; I will get back to you with my answer as soon as I can, which will be at some point today. The system will notify you when this happens. Please do not reply in the meantime as this may unnecessarily delay my response. Many thanks.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 8 days ago.

Many thanks for your patience, I am pleased to be able to continue assisting with your query now. First of all, I am sorry to hear about the issues you have experienced in your situation.

Unfortunately, the rules I work under do not allow me to discuss your chances of success in court. When solicitors determine these, we would conduct a formal case analysis and take the full details and evidence that are available into consideration. On this site we deal with very limited information in a Q&A format, so inevitably certain details and evidence will be missed. Therefore, if we discussed prospects of success based on this limited information alone, we could end up giving misguided advice and prompt you into either making a claim or not making one, when in reality we may have advised the opposite had we known the full details. That is why we are only limited to discussing the legal position and your options, without actually commenting on how good or bad a case you have.

Your rights are as follows: When a private consumer makes a purchase from a business seller, they have certain 'statutory' rights under the Consumer Rights Act 2015. If you wanted to refer to the legislation directly, please follow this link:

https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2015/15/contents/enacted

The Consumer Rights Act 2015 specifically states that there is an expectation that goods must be:

- of satisfactory quality – they must not be faulty or damaged

- as described – they must match any description given at the time of purchase

- fit for purpose – they should be fit for the purpose they are supplied for

If they do not meet the above requirements, the consumer will have certain legal remedies against the seller. Any rights against the manufacturer will only be under a manufacturer’s warranty or guarantee that came with the goods, which is entirely separate. It is, however, important to note that there is no protection against fair wear and tear, misuse or accidental damage.

If the goods do not meet any of the above criteria, the consumer’s rights against the seller are:

1. Reject the goods and request a refund – this is known as the ‘short-term right to reject’ and must be applied within 30 days of purchase or, if later, delivery.

2. Repair or replacement – this is still an option in the first 30 days, if the consumer does not want a refund and becomes the standard options after the 30 days have passed. It is the consumer’s choice as to whether they choose a repair or a replacement. If a repair is chosen, the seller is given one opportunity to provide a satisfactory repair, meaning that if it fails, the goods can still be rejected for a refund, even after the initial 30 days have passed. Alternatively, if the consumer wants to keep the goods, they can ask for a price reduction, based on what is wrong with them. That is something to be negotiated with the seller.

An important aspect of the Consumer Rights Act 2015 is that there is an assumption that any issues complained of, which have become obvious or developed within the first 6 months of buying the goods, were present at the time of purchase. If the seller disagrees that his was the case, it would be up to them to prove otherwise, if challenged in court. On the other hand, any issues which develop more than 6 months after purchase, are assumed not to have originated at the point of sale and it is for the buyer to prove otherwise if challenged in court.

Once a decision has been made on which of the above rights to pursue, the seller should be contacted, preferably in writing, to discuss that with them. If they refuse to discharge their legal obligations under the Consumer Rights Act 2015, a formal letter before action should be sent, asking for the desired resolution and making it clear that legal action could follow through the courts.

In the event this matters needs to be taken further, the following are the relevant links:

A report to Trading Standards can be submitted first: https://ssl.datamotion.com/form.aspx?co=3438&frm=general&to=flare.fromforms

Afterwards, a claim can be pursued in The County Court: https://www.gov.uk/make-money-claim

Hopefully, I have answered your query in a way that is simple and easy to understand. If anything remains unclear, I will be more than happy to clarify it for you. In the meantime, thank you once again for using our services.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 7 days ago.

I hope that your query has been answered to your satisfaction. I just wanted to take this opportunity to remind you that if you needed any further clarification with this query, you should not hesitate to contact me and I will be happy to help. For now, thank you for using our services.